Ride-sharing giant Uber has now been operating in Australia for 10 years, in which time its ‘driver partners’ have racked up a staggering 700 million rides.

    The company said this figure does not include a further 450 million deliveries through UberEats.

    All told the company claims to have used 725,000 drivers and ‘delivery partners’ since the first Aussie Uber ride in Sydney in 2012.

    As part of the celebrations, Uber gathered together twelve of its drivers and merchants who were recognised across a range of categories: from highest rated to longest tenure.

    The company awarded each winner $5000 in recognition of their achievements.

    Uber is also giving away a Polestar 2 to a ‘delivery partner’. In order to win the EV, a driver needs to complete a trip or delivery between September 23 and October 3. That’s all.

    During October Uber will randomly select one trip or delivery that was completed during the timeframe and the ‘delivery partner’ will win the car.

    Uber has previously said it will halve service fees for EV drivers between now and mid-2025, in a bid to encourage its operators to move away from petrol, diesel, and hybrids.

    This new policy was announced in June this year and follows a successful 12-month trial in Australia.

    Uber said in June 2022 the move was equivalent to a $26 million investment in the Australian EV market.

    The first 2500 drivers to make the switch were eligible for half-price service fees, up to a value of $3500 per year.

    According to Uber in June 2022, more than 378,000 electric trips had been completed here since July 1, 2021, and the number of monthly EV trips had increased nearly five-times.

    Fleet buyers such as Hertz, or fleet operators such as Uber, have been touted as key players in driving the move from internal-combustion to electric power.

    Not only do fleets have lots of new cars at a time, those vehicles eventually find their way to the used car market where regular punters can buy them at lower prices.

    As the last part of Uber’s 10-year anniversary celebrations, it is partnering with mentorship company Inspiring Rare Birds to give 100 delivery partners the opportunity to enrol in a business development and mentorship program to “enrich their business acumen”.

    Every one of the 100 selected ‘delivery partners’ will receive 12 months’ of one-on-one mentoring, an initial $2500 to support their other business, and the opportunity to pitch to a panel for additional funding of up to $50,000.

    Uber says applications for this program will open later this year.

    MORE: How Uber is pushing Australian drivers to go electric
    MORE: Uber touts ‘outsized impact’ on growing electric car sales

    Jack Quick

    Jack Quick is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne. Jack studied journalism and photography at Deakin University in Burwood, and previously represented the university in dance nationally. In his spare time, he loves to pump Charli XCX and play a bit of Grand Theft Auto. He’s also the proud owner of a blue, manual 2020 Suzuki Jimny.

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